Government College University
Have you ever felt so spellbound by something that you are literally pulled out of yourself and become ‘eyes only’? Natural sceneries, architectural masterpieces and pieces of art are fabled to induce this effect. I personally experienced this when I visited Government College Lahore (GCU) for the first time. I was amazed by the grandeur of its abundant gardens and Gothic architecture.[divider]C+G’s Take[/divider]
Visiting the iconic and historical Government College was a blast from the past for the writer. He was taken back to his days as a student, pondering over abstract ideas and affairs of the heart.[divider]Experience[/divider]
As I walked along the main road with my friend, I could not resist taking pictures of the Oval Ground and the Main Tower. Both were enthralling in the dim yellow light of the setting sun. My friend told me, “No matter how many pictures you take, you will not feel satiated.” After a while, I decided that rather than trying to pacify my greed, I should enjoy the visit without a mechanical eye and earn the experience for myself.
I went to the ‘Love Garden’ enthusiastically. It resembled a Desi Bethak (traditional South-Asian sitting area) with trimmed arborvitae plants fencing it all around. There are many shady and peripheral position of this garden might explain the noticeable lack of actual birds (and strangely enough, passionate love birds too).
After that, we promenaded towards the sports complex and watched a volleyball game and then made our way to the Main Block. It was built decades before Partition but its outer walls were renovated just a few years ago. As I walked on the newly furnished marble floor, chequered black and white like a chessboard, I began taking more pictures. A girl standing behind me loudly whispered to her friend, “Why do you not take my pictures in long shot like this?” Before I could offer to take some for them, they giggled away around the corner.
From there, we went down to the Shahab Garden to view the large and blush Main Block. A few rebellious trees grow upwards in its lap. My Ravian friend told me that the authorities do not allow anyone to climb the tower, which would otherwise have been extremely exciting. Then we sat for a while in the Amphitheatre which is at the heart of GCU. Made in the image of Greek architecture with terracotta bricks, it consists of a few half-circle stairs. It has two shoulders that push the trees away on both sides.
The Scholars’ Garden is populated by cemented benches that stand timidly in the shade of tall trees, hugging one another. No real scholars could be found sitting in the garden and I considered not writing about it. Then again, I live for literal contradictions and so here it is.
The tour ended with a stroll on numerous other paths, each as beautiful as the other. The evening was topped with excellent tea at the Billu cafe. The eyes only effect did not leave until we left GCU.